Water For Elephants: A Novel Review
The name Water For Elephants sounds like I am in Africa and enjoying the view of a herd of elephants swimming on a steamy, hot African day. The baby elephants are enjoying a glorious day throwing water up in the air and spewing it at their mother.
Water For Elephants: A Novel is now officially a movie now currently showing at theaters around the country.
But, of course, the movie is usually never as good as the book as they do not stick to all the themes of the book itself.
This is a great read about elephants, animals, and working at a circus along with learning about life along the way. The book starts out in a nursing home. We meet Jacob Jankowski who so hates his life now. He talks about the good old days and how he ran away and joined the circus.
But why did Jacob run away to the circus? He was studying to be a vet because of his passion for animals. The week before he was to take his final exam, his parents were tragically killed in a car accident. He found out his parents sacrificed everything for him to go to school and achieve his dream.
This was the time of the Great Depression and for his parents to pull this off was truly remarkable. Broke and penniless, he went and took his exam. He did not write anything and left town on a circus train.
Benzini Brothers was nothing like the top rated Ringling Brothers Circus. Pay was better with them along with the job itself. So, Jacob learns about circus life and growing up with the circus. Cleaning filthy cages, animals that have no food to eat and often abused, would break Jacob's heart.
But, the circus soon learns that Jacob has vet skills and they are so needed. So, he is running the menagerie per say.
There are a lot of colorful characters that Jacob has to deal with and learn to live with. Uncle Al likes to slap people and get away with it. August is a paranoid schizophrenic. He takes his fits of madness and rage out on poor Jacob and he is actually the animal trainer.
With so much to deal with every day, Jacob is usually bleeding, beaten, broken, hungover, swollen, or even has a concussion. He is the only sane one in the whole lot of evil and madness. He is the protector of the weak and innocent. But one mistake that Jacob makes is falling in love with August's wife, Marlena.
The author of Water For Elephants:
A Novel, Sara Gruen, makes her debut novel intriguing, impressive, and so colorful. You can feel and hear the circus. Like a band playing or being on the train itself when traveling through the countryside. Rosie the elephant is a great animal character that will keep you engrossed in the book along with Jacob and Marlena.
Definitely read the book first if you want to see the movie. Sometimes the movie will not make sense and leave things out. Ms. Gruen has made a follow up also to her debut hit, Water For Elephants.
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